|LA ANGELS ( VARGAS )|
TEXAS ( DARVISH )
|975||LA ANGELS||+220||Ov 7.5,-110||+200||Ov 7.5,-115|
|976||TEXAS||-240||Un 7.5,-110||-220||Un 7.5,-105|
|vs Right-handed Starters||58-57||-9||62-49||4.6||0.267||0.326||4.3||0.250||0.318|
|Past 7 Games||2-5||-3.3||3-3||3.6||0.237||0.310||4.6||0.269||0.318|
|vs Left-handed Starters||31-19||+3.8||23-26||5.0||0.280||0.344||4.1||0.244||0.307|
|Past 7 Games||6-1||+5||4-2||5.7||0.287||0.343||3.0||0.233||0.293|
|9/15/2013||WILLIAMS(R)||@ HOUSTON||CLEMENS(R)||2-1||W||-155||9 ov||U||6||4||1||7||7||0|
|9/16/2013||WILSON(L)||@ OAKLAND||PARKER(R)||12-1||W||120||7 ov||O||15||8||0||6||8||1|
|9/17/2013||RICHARDS(R)||@ OAKLAND||GRAY(R)||1-2||L||145||7.5 un||U||7||10||0||9||11||1|
|9/18/2013||VARGAS(L)||@ OAKLAND||GRIFFIN(R)||5-4||W||165||8 ev||O||5||4||0||8||7||1|
|9/26/2013||WILLIAMS(R)||@ TEXAS||GARZA(R)||5-6||L||165||9 un||O||13||11||1||12||5||4|
|9/27/2013||WILSON(L)||@ TEXAS||OGANDO(R)||3-5||L||135||8 ov||P||8||5||1||7||9||0|
|9/28/2013||RICHARDS(R)||@ TEXAS||HOLLAND(L)||4-7||L||155||9 un||O||9||9||5||10||7||0|
|9/29/2013||VARGAS(L)||@ TEXAS||DARVISH(R)|| |
|9/16/2013||GARZA(R)||@ TAMPA BAY||COBB(R)||2-6||L||120||7 un||O||6||4||0||12||8||0|
|9/17/2013||OGANDO(R)||@ TAMPA BAY||HELLICKSON(R)||7-1||W||110||7.5 un||O||10||5||1||4||4||0|
|9/18/2013||HOLLAND(L)||@ TAMPA BAY||ARCHER(R)||3-4||L||110||7 un||P||7||7||0||10||8||0|
|9/19/2013||DARVISH(R)||@ TAMPA BAY||MOORE(L)||8-2||W||-115||6.5 un||O||16||12||0||7||7||1|
|9/20/2013||PEREZ(L)||@ KANSAS CITY||SANTANA(R)||1-2||L||120||7.5 un||U||5||5||0||9||11||0|
|9/21/2013||GARZA(R)||@ KANSAS CITY||GUTHRIE(R)||3-1||W||-105||7.5 un||U||8||6||0||5||5||1|
|9/22/2013||OGANDO(R)||@ KANSAS CITY||SHIELDS(R)||0-4||L||115||7 ev||U||6||5||0||5||2||0|
|9/26/2013||GARZA(R)||LA ANGELS||WILLIAMS(R)||6-5||W||-175||9 un||O||12||5||4||13||11||1|
|9/27/2013||OGANDO(R)||LA ANGELS||WILSON(L)||5-3||W||-145||8 ov||P||7||9||0||8||5||1|
|9/28/2013||HOLLAND(L)||LA ANGELS||RICHARDS(R)||7-4||W||-165||9 un||O||10||7||0||9||9||5|
|9/29/2013||DARVISH(R)||LA ANGELS||VARGAS(L)|| |
|LA ANGELS: HITTING: SS ERICK AYBAR will likely get another crack at the leadoff spot by default. DH/OF BOBBY ABREU can still draw walks and run a little. 2B HOWIE KENDRICK traded batting average for more power last year. He's still one of baseball's better middle infield bats. 1B ALBERT PUJOLS should benefit from DH-ing a couple of times a year. OF TORII HUNTER is fading fast and may not provide middle-of-the-order power. OF VERNON WELLS has a better chance than Hunter to bounce back, and the Angels have to be patient considering his monster contract. MARK TRUMBO will get a look at 3B. If he can't get it done, ALBERTO CALLASPO would start and Trumbo would back-up first and DH. Speedy OF PETER BOURJOS will start in left, and top prospect MIKE TROUT will soon replace free agents-to-be Abreu or Hunter. KENDRYS MORALES could DH regularly if his ankle is healthy. CHRIS IANNETTA is no Mike Napoli, but he's a monster upgrade over Jeff Mathis. |
STARTING PITCHING: JERED WEAVER had a lot of things go right in 2011, and it's not hard to picture him as a Cy Young candidate again. But he faded late in the year, and may not belong in the upper echelon or pitchers. A cutter has led to DAN HAREN's rebirth. He's right there with Weaver, just a step behind the elite arms. C.J. WILSON may not get the same run support, but he should benefit from getting out of hitter-friendly Arlington; he had a 2.31 road ERA last year. ERVIN SANTANA never developed into a top-of-the-line starter, but he's become more consistent and settled in as a solid starter. Once a washed-out former prospect, JEROME WILLIAMS came back to the States from Taiwan and delivered three quality starts last September. He's not likely to have sustained success, but he does have the inside track for a rotation spot. Middling prospect GARRETT RICHARDS seems like the most likely candidate to step into the rotation in case of injury.
RELIEF PITCHING: JORDAN WALDEN will have the closer's role again entering the spring, but while he was overpowering he was also very shaky at times. He gave up seven runs over 2.2 innings in his last three appearances. RICH THOMPSON decided to lean on his cutter last year and the results were excellent. If Walden slips up, Thompson has to be in the closer conversation. LaTROY HAWKINS was solid with Milwaukee (2.42 ERA) and joins his ninth different team since 2003. He is expected to set up Walden as well. Lefty SCOTT DOWNS was far from dominant last year, despite his 1.34 ERA. But Scioscia does trust him in high-leverage situations, making him a possible fallback if Walden struggles. The Angels don't seem to have big plans for HISANORI TAKAHASHI, the most well-compensated long reliever in baseball.
|TEXAS: HITTING: 2B IAN KINSLER will lead off again. A few less at-'em balls and he's an MVP candidate. SS ELVIS ANDRUS is coming along offensively, but his poor SB% could lead to fewer attempts. Injuries are the only thing that will keep OF JOSH HAMILTON out of the MVP discussion. He'll likely start declining at age 35, but DH MICHAEL YOUNG can't help but put up numbers batting cleanup in this lineup. 3B ADRIAN BELTRE was unstoppable in Arlington. Like Hamilton, he's an MVP candidate if healthy. Injuries are piling up for OF NELSON CRUZ, who still has monster power but doesn't run as much anymore. C MIKE NAPOLI is MLB's best offensive catcher and will play some 1B on 'off' days. Because their lineup is stacked, Texas can play defensive-minded/offensively limited 1B MITCH MORELAND. And because Ron Washington would prefer to play Hamilton in left, speedy CF CRAIG GENTRY looks to have the edge over DAVID MURPHY for the starting job in center. Cuban import LEONYS MARTIN will start the season in Triple-A, but JULIO BORBON could earn a significant OF role. |
STARTING PITCHING: COLBY LEWIS can overpower when he's on, but as a flyball pitcher in cozy Arlington he's going to have a handful of ugly days. The much-ballyhooed YU DARVISH brings a deep arsenal of pitches and a durable frame from Japan. He's probably the best Japanese arm to ever cross the Pacific. Lefty MATT HARRISON solidified his rotation spot. He has topped out as a respectable No. 3-type starter. DEREK HOLLAND has top-of-the-rotation upside. Consistency has been an issue, but hopefully another year and some big postseason moments helped to cure that. The big story is NEFTALI FELIZ moving to the rotation. He was considered a future ace in the minors, but the transition might not be easy. His K/BB ratio plummeted last year and his flyball tendencies could spell disaster in Arlington. Keep in mind the Rangers made a successful closer-to-ace switch with C.J. Wilson. Top prospect MARTIN PEREZ could be an option in the second half.
RELIEF PITCHING: Veteran JOE NATHAN was brought in and handed the closer's job. He struggled in his first year back from Tommy John surgery, but most pitchers who've had the procedure don't come all the way back until their second full season. If Nathan falters, MIKE ADAMS could be next in line. He had no trouble transitioning from pitcher-friendly San Diego in the National League to hitter-friendly Arlington and the A.L.'s superior bats. KOJI UEHARA would also be in the closer discussion if Nathan falters, but he was unhappy about being traded from Baltimore and faltered for the Rangers late last year. ALEXI OGANDO got a huge boost from his defense and his bullpen before a late-season collapse. He threw by far a career-high in innings; better stamina would allow him to take the next step and possibly rejoin the rotation.
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER AL PREVIEW (LA ANGELS-TEXAS) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
*Angels-Rangers Preview* ========================
By JEFF MEZYDLO STATS Senior Writer
Los Angeles (78-82) at Texas (89-71), 3:05 p.m. EDT
A late surge has the Texas Rangers entering their scheduled regular season finale in position to reach the playoffs for a fourth straight year.
With Yu Darvish hoping to continue his success against the Los Angeles Angels, the Rangers can potentially secure an AL wild-card berth with a seventh consecutive victory Sunday.
By Tampa Bay dropping two straight in Toronto and Texas (90-71) taking the first three of this four-game set, the Rangers have moved into a tie with the Rays for the second and final wild-card spot. The teams trail wild-card leader Cleveland by one game.
The Rangers have batted .307 and averaged 6.7 runs during their six-game winning streak, but they know that won't mean anything if they don't come through Sunday.
"It doesn't change what we need to do, we need to come in (Sunday) and win a game," said Joe Nathan, who closed out Saturday's 7-4 victory over Los Angeles in a downpour. "We don't want to have to rely on somebody to help us all the time."
If the Rays win Sunday - their game against the Blue Jays starts two hours before this one - the Rangers will miss the postseason for the first time since 2009 if they lose.
If Texas and Tampa Bay remain tied after Sunday while Cleveland beats Minnesota, the Rangers and Rays would meet in a one-game playoff for the second wild-card spot Monday in Arlington. Should Texas win Sunday while the Indians and Rays both lose, Cleveland would host the Rangers in Wednesday's wild-card game because it won the season series 5-1.
If all three finish the regular season tied, the tiebreaking scenario would have the Indians hosting the Rays on Monday, with the winner earning one wild-card berth and the loser playing at Texas on Tuesday for the final spot.
"We have to take care of business with the same intensity and not let down," Nathan told the Rangers' official website. "If we win, we still have more baseball left to play."
Craig Gentry had two hits with an RBI on Saturday as the Rangers ran their home winning streak over the Angels to seven and improved to 14-4 against their West division rival.
Gentry is 6 for 12 in the series and batting .455 in his last nine games.
Darvish (13-9, 2.82 ERA) is 5-0 over his past seven starts against the Angels and has a 2.76 ERA in the last five. He's won all three matchups this season with 23 strikeouts in 18 innings.
The right-hander has a 2.22 ERA in his last four starts overall but has gone 1-2.
"The most important thing right now is to win a game," said Darvish, who was walked 10 in 10 1-3 innings in his last two starts.
Jason Vargas (9-7, 4.01) could potentially spoil the Rangers' postseason hopes and help the Angels (78-83) avoid a four-game sweep to conclude a second straight underachieving season.
The left-hander, who has a 2.89 ERA without a decision in three starts versus Texas in 2013, went 0-2 with an 8.41 ERA in his first four September starts before tossing a four-hitter in Tuesday's 3-0 victory over Oakland.
Vargas, who has three complete games during a season in which he missed almost two months because of a blood clot near his armpit, will be a free agent and could be making his last start for the Angels.
"When you come back from (an injury) like that, you've got to make do with what you've got and let the chips fall," he said.
Batting .250 with 21 homers and 78 RBIs during a disappointing first season with Los Angeles, former Texas star Josh Hamilton has hit .300 during a 13-game hitting streak.
While Hamilton has gone 3 for 10 with a double against Darvish, Howie Kendrick is 0 for 14. Mike Trout, in a 3-for-22 slump, has hit .308 (8 for 26) with three homers off Darvish.
|Last Updated: 9/20/2014 5:04:50 AM EST|